Askmoses-A Jews Resource
What is Family Purity?
Browse our archives

The Scholar is ready to answer your question. Click the button below to chat now.


Scholar Online:

Type in your question here:

Why do we wash our hands before karpas without the usual blessing?

by Rabbi Yossi Marcus

  

Library » Holidays » Passover » Seder » Laws and Rituals | Subscribe | What is RSS?


PRINT EMAIL COMMENT

The Talmud says that before eating a food that is dipped in a liquid, one must wash one’s hands (Pesachim 115a). The reason for this is very complicated. To put it simply, liquid is more susceptible to and is a more potent “carrier” of ritual impurity.

However, there is a disagreement among the authorities whether this Talmudic statement still applies nowadays, or whether it applied only in the times of the Temple ritual purity was an issue (see Rashi and Rashbam, and Tosafos).

The Talmud says that before eating a food that is dipped in a liquid, one must wash one’s hands (Pesachim 115a)...During the seder, however, everyone washes their hands—regardless of their year-round custom—in order to add another atypical practice to make the evening different and provoke the curiosity of the children
Because of this argument, most people do not generally wash their hands for wet foods, relying on the more lenient opinion. Even those who do wash, do not make a blessing for this washing (as they would for washing for bread), since you can only make a blessing on something that is certainly required (Shulchan Aruch Harav 158:3).

During the Seder, however, everyone washes their hands—regardless of their year-round custom—in order to add another atypical practice to make the evening different and provoke the curiosity of the children (Chok Yaakov).

TAGS: karpas

ADD A COMMENT

Please email me when new comments are posted (you must be  logged in).
Talmud
Usually referring to the Babylonian edition, it is a compilation of Rabbinic law, commentary and analysis compiled over a 600 year period (200 BCE - 427 CE). Talmudic verse serves as the bedrock of all classic and modern-day Torah-Jewish literature.
Rashi
Acronym for Rabbi Shlomo Yitzchaki (1040-1105). Legendary French scholar who authored the fundemental and widely accepted "Rashi commentary" on the entire Bible and Talmud.
Seder
Festive meal eaten on the first two nights of the holiday of Passover (In Israel, the Seder is observed only the first night of the holiday). Seder highlights include: reading the story of the Exodus, eating Matzah and bitter herbs, and drinking four cups of wine.
Temple
1. Usually a reference to the Holy Temple which was/will be situated in Jerusalem. 1st Temple was built in 825 BCE and was destroyed in 423 BCE. The 2nd Temple was built in 350 BCE and was destroyed in 70 CE. The 3rd Temple will be built by the Messiah. 2. A synagogue.